What Impact Will Social Media Have on Health IT Vendors, Physician Practices, and Regulatory Bodies?

Thanks for the question VJHudson. For the answer, I decided to turn to Jeff Livingston, M.D. a partner at the Irving, Texas-based MacArthur OB/GYN, an obstetrics and gynecology practice, is one of the leading advocates of provider-based social media interaction in the industry. As a true expert, Dr. Livingston is my go-to-guy when it comes to discussing the impact social media will have on the world of medicine. Here’s his answer.

“Physician engagement in social media has been on an upward trend for the past few years and is almost certain to continue. Physicians are recognizing the importance of online reputation management and see social media as one tool. Others enjoy the platform provided by social media to offer patient education on a scale never imagined. Certain practices use social media because of the branding power that drives new patient acquisition and improves current patient satisfaction. The social media doctors understand that one can expand the doctor patient relationship beyond the four walls of the office.” Read more »

Providers are Using Social Media to Engage Patients, Collaborate with Each Other

It’s beginning to happen, slowly, but surely. Social media use in healthcare is beginning to scratch the surface.

The UCLA Health System live-tweets brain surgery, including short video clips to reduce future patients’ fear of a procedure. Johns Hopkins uses Facebook to generate a 21-fold increase of people who registered themselves as an organ donor in a single day. Texas Health Resources in Arlington is using social media internally and externally, for knowledge-sharing, team building, education, and employee recruitment. Out of the organization’s 21,500 employees, 3,500 are active social media users. Read more »

An All-Natural C-Section?

Although numerous medical studies have pointed to the benefits of the natural aspects of childbirth, such as immediate skin-to-skin contact and early breastfeeding initiation, the complications of the surgery room make incorporating natural strategies a little more difficult.

But now, there is a push towards a different kind of c-section, dubbed a “natural” or “gentle” c-section. An article in the British Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology describes natural c-sections as “woman-centered,” but a perhaps more accurate description of the trend may be “family-centered,” as they allow for more inclusion of the first family moments together. Read more »

Hospitals are Doing C-sections that Allow Families to Bond Immediately

Minutes after taking her first breath outside the womb, Kathryn “Katie” Marie Wilusz cuddled on her mom’s bare chest, gazing in the direction of her voice. Dad sat close by, dressed in scrubs, as she wrapped a tiny hand around his index finger.

The new parents, Lauren and Joe Wilusz, sang happy birthday in celebration of their daughter’s arrival.

As the family bonded at one end of the operating bed, a doctor, nurse and medical technician at Anne Arundel Medical Center worked to close the incision that was cut to deliver Katie by cesarean section. Read more »

Point-of-Care Education: 6 Apps in Action

Physicians today often find themselves with complex information to convey to patients during increasingly shorter office visits. Adding to that problem, studies have shown that patient retention of verbal information given at the point of care is quite low. This means patients may fail to follow through on a treatment plan, or physicians may wind up repeating the same information to the same patients visit after visit.

But there’s an app for that—several, in fact. Melissa McCormack of medical software website Software Advice recently sat down with MacArthur OB/GYN’s Dr. Jeff Livingston to discuss his experience with mobile apps at the point of care. Read more »

Hooked on Social Media: How One OB/GYN Uses Social Media to Help His Patients

By Dan Hinmon, Principal –– When Dr. Jeff Livingston, an OB/GYN practicing at MacArthur OB/GYN in Irving, TX, began his practice he immediately found a cause. “I was trying to address the problem of teen pregnancy in our area,” he remembers. “There were a lot of pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. I was volunteering time at the local high school.” Read more »

Dr. Livingston Honored with 2012 Heroes for Children Award

Irving Rambler –– Dr. Jeff Livingston, an Irving-based physician and managing partner of MacArthur OBGYN, received the 2012 Heroes for Children Award from the Texas State Board of Education for his public school volunteerism and his demonstration of character, heart and passion. Livingston, one of 15 recipients of this year’s award, received it from Texas’ top educators group on Nov. 16.

The Heroes for Children Award is given annually to individuals who dedicate their time — often ranging in the thousands of hours — to Texas public schools. The Board of Education’s award recognizes volunteers from across Texas for their passionate and strong desire to give back to their communities and schools, and their hard work to improve the lives of children.

Dr. Livingston is a volunteer in the Irving Independent School District where he educates students, parents and educators about health issues, teen pregnancy and STD prevention.

Throughout the past nine years, Livingston has spoken to countless Irving ISD students, providing information about making proper sexual choices, personal responsibility, sexually transmitted diseases and pregnancy prevention. His volunteerism in the schools began shortly after he began to practice in 2003.

“Shortly after I joined MacArthur OBGYN I began seeing a large number of young teenagers and was surprised at the prevalence of sexually transmitted disease, teen pregnancy and an overall lack of knowledge regarding sexual health. I reached out to the local school nurses and offered myself as a resource,” Livingston said. “Navigating through a politically charged issue like teen pregnancy was a challenge at first, but after gaining the support of Irving ISD administration I began giving lectures and presentations on teen pregnancy and STD prevention.”

Livingston also sponsors and works closely with the Teenage Parent and Parenting (TAPPS) workshop each spring, focusing on child development, parenting, child abuse prevention, healthy relationships and other health information.

TAPPS is a district-wide program that meets the needs of pregnant and parenting students. While the national high school graduation rate for teen parents hovers around 40 percent, the graduation rate for TAPPS students is higher than 90 percent. By creating a partnership between the TAPPS program and community physicians, the partnership extends the reach of the program beyond the four walls of the classroom.

“The physicians and I in my practice not only care for the pregnant student, but also work with them to make sure they are enrolled in the TAPPS program,” he said. “We enroll them in the YWCA Nurse Family partnership, which provides mentorship, prenatal and parenting education and schedule visits around their school day.

“We empower students to be ready to parent, and we aggressively educate on contraception to avoid a second teen pregnancy. We have demonstrated that identifying the pregnant students and meeting their specific needs can change lives. We see successful pregnancies and help the students achieve success in the classroom. The payoff for these efforts will be seen for generations to come.”

Dr. Livingston is a board certified obstetrician and gynecologist who grew up in Dallas. In 2009 he received the Golden Apple Award in recognition of outstanding contributions to students and teachers. He also serves as the medical director of a crisis pregnancy center called Real Choices and is former chairman of the OB/GYN Department at Baylor Medical Center of Irving.

The Heroes for Children honorees are selected by the state education board members and are recognized for volunteering their time, talents and skills to help improve the public schools in their communities. One recipient of the award is chosen from each Board of Education district.

Written by Phil Cerroni

Doctors Use Social Media To Make Virtual House Calls

Few remember that doctors used to make house calls back in the 1940s and 1950s. But, the spirit of that service is still alive and well thanks to social media –– some doctors are embracing the online world and using it to connect to patients.

As expectant mom Kristi Francisco nears her due date, time with her obstretrician, Dr. Jeff Livingston, is at a premium. But, the Grapevine mother knows a way she can ask him a question anytime, anywhere.

“If my grocery store and my favorite restaurant is on Facebook, then my doctor should be as well,” Francisco said.

Dr. Livingston agrees. He’s one of only a few north Texas doctors who has embraced the social media world.

“If we want to make a connection, we need to talk to them in the way that they want to talk to us,” said Dr. Livingston.

In between delivering babies and seeing patients, Dr. Livingston hops onto the MacArthur OB/GYN Facebook and Twitter pages to answer questions posted by patients. One, for instance, asked how soon one can find out a baby’s gender. Another poster wanted to know if you can eat fish while pregnant.

Read more on CBS 11 »

Technology Brings Dad into Delivery Room via Skype

Baylor Irving’s labor and delivery unit recently hosted a high-tech delivery when patient Christina Robertson used Skype, a software application that allows users to make voice and video calls over the Internet, to share the birth of her daughter with her husband overseas.

Christina is so shy she wasn’t even sure she wanted the doctor in the delivery room, much less extended family. But, as her labor progressed she became more comfortable with the experience. Besides, she had something really important to focus on. Her baby girl was on the way, but her husband, Army Specialist Justin Robertson, was stationed half-way around the world in South Korea and would have to miss the birth of his first child.

“We had been Skyping once or twice a week and I promised him I would Skype after she was born so he could see her,” Christina says, “Then one of the nurses said another patient had Skyped her baby’s delivery.”

Phone calls were made, e-mails were sent, permissions were granted and procedures were followed. Christina’s mom was instructed to stand at the head of the bed, iPad ready. Though it was after 9:57 p.m. in Irving, it was 11:57 a.m. in Seoul, South Korea, as Justin sat at his computer, listening and watching as MacArthur OB/GYN Jeff Livingston, M.D., lifted the soldier’s precious baby girl over the draped sheet and laid her on her mother’s chest.

[blockquote3]“What an amazing experience,” says Dr. Livingston. “I love how technology can be used in health care to bring people together and make the world a little smaller. Using Skype to make it possible for one of our soldiers fighting for our country to be able to witness the birth of his child is just awesome. I love that Baylor Irving continues to be supportive and a leader in innovative uses of technology in health care.”[/blockquote3]

Taylor Robertson was 9-pounds, 3-ounces at birth with a full head of dark hair like her mom. Dad received permission to come home two days after Taylor’s birth so he could spend the first 10 days of his daughter’s life with his family. Once he returns to South Korea, he will be far away in miles, but the sound of daddy’s voice and the look of love on his face will only be a mouse click away.

HealthTap’s Social Network of 5,000 Doctors is Ready to Give Free Advice

It’s fair to raise an eyebrow when a social network for healthcare comes along, but this network just might make you raise both eyebrows in surprise: HealthTap has created a healthcare social network with more than 5,000 real-live doctors to answer patient questions. Not peers, not “experts” and not brands. Health questions aren’t posted for the world to see or comment on. This is a private network between a patient and thousands of doctors. Read more »